Cyclosporin in dermatology: A practical compendium

Document Type



Department of Medicine; Internal Medicine


Cyclosporine A belongs to calcineurin inhibitor family, which has the ability to selectively suppress T-cells. Owing to its immune-modulatory effects, it had been in use for graft versus host diseases and organ transplant rejection for many years, but in dermatology, it was first approved for use in 1997 in the treatment of psoriasis. Other off label indications for skin diseases includes atopic dermatitis, chronic spontaneous urticaria, lichen planus, pyoderma gangrenosum, alopecia areata, granuloma annulare and several others. A thorough search of Medline-PubMed database, Google Scholar and Uptodate was performed for evidence-based and peer-reviewed information. We have summarized the use of cyclosporine in dermatological diseases with respect to its, dosage, safety considerations and monitoring guidelines. Furthermore, brief overview of its pharmacology, drug interactions, use in pregnancy and lactation has been discussed. Despite of its common adverse effects like nephrotoxicity and hypertension, cyclosporine offers good safety profile when used in skin diseases. Decision to start cyclosporine therapy is individualized and it should be based on analysis of risk versus benefit. Nevertheless, CYA is preferred over other immunosuppressants in dermatology because of early therapeutic response and less myelosupression. This article offers concise but detailed summary of this beneficial immune-suppressive agent in skin diseases.


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Publication (Name of Journal)

Dermatologic Therapy